Following their “Mounting The World” EP, which hit the underground scene in 2013 like a bombshell, two smashing LPs (“Rise And Ride” & “From The Dead”), countless club and festival shows and a lot of touring across Europe, the Southern German riff foundry Stallion is now returning with its third full-length “Slaves Of Time”. Uncompromisingly old school in every aspect, the band plows ahead through all traditional varieties of heavy metal. We had a little talking with guitarist Axxl Force about the current events and of course Stallion.
Axxl welcome to SFTV. What is the latest news from the Stallion camp? How did you take advantage of your free time through the pandemic? When do you think the time will be right to reload?
Thank you very much for having us! As we’re from three different countries we weren’t able to see each other for 4 months or so, so we weren’t able to rehears or to write new material in the traditional way. So we channeled our efforts into recording stuff for fun, so be prepared for some new cool goodies maybe later this year, but I’m not telling you any more at this point. As for when we expect to go on with live show: we honestly don’t know. Some people expect gigs to return in late autumn others say there could be another wave of the virus. We’re prepared for everything.
Which was the response from the fans and the press for “Slaves Of Time”? Has it fulfilled your ambitions? Are you satisfied with it?
We’ve received great response on the album and we’re also very pleased with how it turned out. I’m confident that this is the best album we could make at that moment in time. It’s just a shame we only got to play three release shows. But hopefully we’ll make up for that in the future.
Do you think you step over to new horizons with “Slaves Of Time” in comparison with your previous albums?
We always try to go one step further than we did before. I think that was also true for our second album “From The Dead”. But it sure is more evolution than revolution.
Which do you think are the strengths in Stallion’s music?
We are a live band. We want to go out there and feel the energy of the stage and the fans screaming in our faces. That’s why we started this. That doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy recording or writing new stuff. In fact I’m recording other bands for a hobby as well but our music is made for the stage for sure.
Which values do you think are lost and gained in metal music the last years?
A lot has changed of course. But not necessarily for the better or worse. On the one hand with the advancements of technology more people are empowered to make great music without spending a lot of money which definitely is a democratization of the whole process and thus leads to more and better music being produced. On the other hand with social media things tend to be more superficial. Some bands (or labels) invest insane amounts of money into videos or image while the music itself is not very spectacular. So you have both there but I think in general you have a lot more and better music out there than ever before you just have to look closer.
When this entire situation will finish what will you prioritize to begin to perk up?
I think we’ll have to lock ourselves up in the rehearsal room for several weeks. Nah, just kidding. We just want to go back to the level we were before the lockdown struck, because we were in really good shape back then. We’re also writing new material as well and as soon as we’re able to finish the rest of our release tour we probably go back to wrap up the next album.
You’ve got clear political standing, something that is often missing in the metal scene nowadays, and deliver sociocritical lyrics. What lead you to write such lyrics something that we usually meet in thrash metal bands?
Hm it’s not a conscious decision I guess. We’re just writing about stuff that concerns us and that we’re think about a lot. ATM it looks like the world is going down the drain and that is really painful to watch, at least it is for me. We’re just voicing what we’re feeling and we want people to also be concerned and act on it.
With guitarist Claudio Hürlimann and bassist Christian Stämpfe what did the band gain? Did they contribute in the album?
Stämpfe is with us for a long time and thus contributed to everything we did in the past few years. Clode joined us early last year when the majority of “Slaves Of Time” was already written but I he did write all of his solos and he absolutely killed it I might say.
You produce your albums by yourselves but now you hired Marco Brinkmann for the mix. Why don’t you trust none nowadays as there are so many accomplished sound engineers, producers etc?
Yeah maybe it’s a bit harsh to say that I’d trust no-one else to do it properly. Of course there are a lot of fantastic engineers out there. It’s just that we have very specific requirements and most of the professional engineers work – well – very professional on an industry standard level. That means: Overeditied drums, Samples replacement like there’s no tomorrow. Don’t get me wrong, we all do this as well we just want someone to do it who has the time and taste to leave some life in the tracks with the eye of an old school metal fan and not just do your standard 9-5 standard metal production.
How would you designate Stallion on stage? Would you try to give a live streaming show to your fans?
Pure energy :D. Nah, just kidding. We’re having fun on stage and we want the fans to have fun as well. Unfortunately that only works when the fans are actually there so it’s unlikely we’d be doing a streaming concert. There are other bands who already did that on a very professional level which we couldn’t deliver atm both technologically and musically.
Thanx for the interview and give an end.
Thanks again for for having us and I wish us all live concerts very soon. See you guys out there. Take care!